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Equine Health Resource

Small Colon Impaction

The small colon is the last segment of intestine. It is 6-9 feet long and continues as the rectum.

Small colon impaction is more common in pony breeds and miniature horses. An impaction here is the most common cause of intestinal obstruction and severe colic in these breeds. Since it may be difficult for a vet to perform a rectal exam on these smaller breeds, reaching a definitive diagnosis may be challenging.

Horses with small colon impaction typically become very gas distended. Some horses respond to oral and intravenous fluids and nursing care. More severe cases may require colic surgery and physical removal of the impaction.

Helpful Terms & Topics in HSVGWritten, Reviewed or Shared by Experts in Equine Health

Author: Doug Thal DVM Dipl. ABVP


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